Title: Under the Light of the Italian Moon
Author: Jennifer Anton
Genre: Historical Fiction
A promise keeps them apart until WW2 threatens to destroy their love forever
Fonzaso, Italy, between two wars
Nina Argenta doesn’t want the traditional life of a rural Italian woman. The daughter of a strong-willed midwife, she is determined to define her own destiny. But when her brother emigrates to America, she promises her mother to never leave.
When childhood friend Pietro Pante briefly returns to their mountain town, passion between them ignites while Mussolini forces political tensions to rise. Just as their romance deepens, Pietro must leave again for work in the coal mines of America. Nina is torn between joining him and her commitment to Italy and her mother.
As Mussolini’s fascists throw the country into chaos and Hitler’s Nazis terrorise their town, each day becomes a struggle to survive greater atrocities. A future with Pietro seems impossible when they lose contact and Nina’s dreams of a life together are threatened by Nazi occupation and an enemy she must face alone…
A gripping historical fiction novel, based on a true story and heartbreaking real events.
Spanning over two decades, Under the Light of the Italian Moon is an epic, emotional and triumphant tale of one woman’s incredible resilience during the rise of fascism and Italy’s collapse into WWII.
(I had reviewed this novel previously for Readers’ Favorite. While I am unable to post my review on Goodreads or Amazon, due to their reviewer guidelines, I’m happy to present it here.)
Under the Light of the Italian Moon by Jennifer Anton is a beautiful historical fiction novel about the life of Nina Argenta. Growing up in a small village in Italy, Nina’s mother is the local midwife, a strong woman who has delivered many babies and overcome many hardships. As Nina grows, Adalaisa, her mother, asks her to stay in the village after her brother goes off to American. Young, at the time, Nina agrees, but then she falls in love with Pietro Pante. He decides America is the future for him, so he leaves, but then ends up returning to marry Nina. Nina, however, knows she must remain for her mother. This, at times heart breaking and hopeful novel spans the course of two world wars as Nina and Pietro struggle with their lives apart, and through many tragedies.
Under the Light of the Italian Moon by Jennifer Anton kept me captivated from the first page. Like a slow burning candle, the story of Nina and Pietro is told with skillful prose and historical accuracy to the time. I really loved how Miss Anton presents a realistic narrative, as well as showing how different generations deal with the hardships of war and maintaining relationships from a great distance. My favorite character was Nina and Pietro’s daughter, Laisa. I found her courage and steadfastness a good contrast to Nina’s sometimes instability with all the tragedy befalling her. I would definitely recommend this novel to someone who appreciates a carefully woven story, without rushing to a quick ending.
Barnes & Noble: https://bit.ly/3n1nDqC
Bookshop.org (U.S. only): https://bit.ly/3ofS39T
I am Books Boston: https://bit.ly/2Z0mWUO
About the Author:
Jennifer Anton is an American/Italian dual citizen born in Joliet, Illinois and now lives between London and Lake Como, Italy. A proud advocate for women’s rights and equality, she hopes to rescue women’s stories from history, starting with her Italian family.
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